Traverse City Record-Eagle

Our Views

August 27, 2012

Cheers and Jeers: 08/27/2012

-- To the 4-H kids who donated thousands of dollars raised from livestock sales and to Team Elmer's for pledging to donate materials necessary to construct a bike path along the far eastern edge of the Northwestern Michigan Fairgrounds, where Ezekiel "Zeke" Goodwin, 6, was fatally struck Aug. 8 by a pickup truck. Cheers also to those who continue to make donations.

-- To the Cherryland Humane Society on the celebration Sunday of its 56th anniversary. It has provided an invaluable service to area pets, residents and communities since July 1956 when it opened its doors in a 2,500-square-foot donated house. The society is now housed in a 14,000-square-foot facility on Ahlberg Road built on land donated by the Grand Traverse Road Commission.

-- To the family of Noah Pippin and the team looking for him in western Montana. Pippin, 31, was last seen in September 2010 hiking in the Bob Marshall Wilderness Area. A 1998 Suttons Bay High School graduate, he served three tours of duty in Iraq. He was serving in the California National Guard and awaiting deployment when last seen.

-- To the Leelanau County Sheriff's Department for ticketing a downstate woman, who, while drunk, let an intoxicated friend drive her car. A deputy stopped the car on M-22 on County Road 651 on Aug. 10 about 2:30 a.m. The car owner/passenger's blood alcohol tested at 0.20, twice the legal limit. The driver's test showed 0.08. She faces a count of intoxicated driving.

-- To the Downtown Development Authority for the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certificate it received from the U.S. Green Building Council for energy-saving improvement, including installation of a solar power generation system at the city's 2-year-old parking deck in Old Town. The $240,000 system, which has an estimated 20-year payback, is meeting and sometimes exceeding expectations, city officials and project contractors said.

-- To beachgroomers who are improperly "grooming" water frontage without obtaining a required U.S. Army Corps of Engineers permit. A new state law has removed a requirement for a state permit to mow beach vegetation between the water's edge and statutory high water mark, but many activities still require a Michigan Department of Environmental Quality permit. Violators should be prosecuted and fined. Property owners have a responsibility to learn what they can and cannot "groom" under existing laws.

-- To the state Legislature and Gov. Rick Snyder for their lousy environmental stewardship in creating and enacting such confusing and uninformed "beach-grooming" legislation without considering the long-term environmental consequences to the Great Lakes.

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